Erik ten Hag hails Fernandes’ finish as Man Utd sink Saints
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Manchester United’s plans to make their seventh signing this summer could be in jeopardy unless they accelerate their efforts to recruit Barcelona right-back Sergino Dest. With less than 48 hours of the transfer window remaining, Erik ten Hag may face a scramble to take another former player to Old Trafford before the deadline.
According to Fabrizio Romano, Dest is considering a proposal from Villarreal to join on a season-long loan after being told he isn’t in Xavi Hernandez’s plans at the Nou Camp. He’s willing to open talks about a potential move across La Liga, with discussions ongoing with Barcelona.
The report adds that Ten Hag wants to reunite with the 21-year-old American, and an 11th-hour move to United is considered a possibility. However, the Red Devils must offload Aaron Wan-Bissaka first, amid concrete interest from Crystal Palace and West Ham United.
United recently rebuffed Palace and West Ham approaches for Wan-Bissaka over fears they wouldn’t be able to replace him in time, The Athletic claim. But Dest’s sudden availability could prompt the M16 giants to perform a sudden U-turn and back Ten Hag with one final summer acquisition.
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Ten Hag has reiterated his desire to have two established options in each position as he begins his rebuild at United. The Dutchman has stocked up his squad depth with five new additions since becoming boss – Tyrell Malacia, Christian Eriksen, Lisandro Martinez, Casemiro and Antony.
Newcastle United goalkeeper Martin Dubravka is also expected to complete a move on Wednesday. But Diogo Dalot and Wan-Bissaka remain Ten Hag’s only right-back options, so there is unsurprisingly reluctance to allow the latter to leave without a replacement lined up.
United reportedly planned to wrap up their summer dealings with Dubravka’s arrival, but Dest’s situation could lure the club back into the market. The £85million deal for Antony accumulated their summer spending to £227m, the most they have ever spent in a single transfer window.
And while the Brazilian winger is thought to have demanded the remainder of Ten Hag’s transfer kitty, Dest’s loan status makes it a possible deal. United may have to move fast, though, with Barcelona’s La Liga rivals already at the negotiation table. It could be a busy deadline day at Old Trafford, with a few players still expected to leave.
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